ISSP receives IB PYP authorization

By Nhat Le   July 31, 2023 | 01:00 am PT
International School Saigon Pearl (ISSP) has been officially authorized as an IB World School for the Primary Years Programme (PYP) by IBO after two years as a candidate.

The IB framework for elementary schools has been implemented in the school, including the curriculum and the way the faculty and staff work.

During two tough years, the leadership and teachers toiled to meet various stringent requirements in order to deliver quality, globally approved international education programs from IBO.

"All teachers are professionally trained to teach the IB PYP," Lester Stephens, head of school at International School Saigon Pearl (ISSP), says.

"The team spent two years coaching, planning, and attending reflection meetings weekly to deliver the best learning experience for students."

According to the school’s representative, early childhood and elementary school age are viewed as the foundation phase, which plays an important role in the child's long-term development. As a result, children require a long-term, inclusive learning environment in which they are fully prepared to adapt to a changing world.


Teachers at ISSP have spent two years training, planning, and reflecting weekly. Photo courtesy of ISSP

The IB PYP program at ISSP aims to develop students' natural curiosity, foster independent thinking, and help them become global citizens. The training material focuses on encouraging kids to engage in worthwhile learning activities, refining skills through real-world applications, and developing a thorough grasp of their surroundings through practical application.

Stephens says the school's curriculum is organized according to the IB program framework in conjunction with American and Vietnamese standards to provide a good and suitable learning experience for students in HCMC.

International School Saigon Pearl (ISSP) provides personalized learning with small classes and a few students in each. This allows students to acquire intellectual, personal and other essential abilities that will help them become global citizens.

"This is an important advantage for the IBO's accreditation team's appreciation of ISSP during its audit visit last May," Stephens says.


A student at the ISSP library. Photo courtesy of ISSP

During the accreditation process, IBO praised the close collaboration between the school and parents in the implementation of teaching techniques. ISSP promotes an open dialogue method based on understanding and respect.

Parents express that they are encouraged to be in close contact with their child's classroom teacher and are welcomed into the school. They favorably described the school as a real community.

The organization also appreciated the teaching personnel at the ISSP school. Students have the opportunity to express themselves and are appreciated for their uniqueness here.

Students are at the heart of the International School Saigon Pearl. Their voices are always heard and appreciated. Furthermore, teachers design authentic learning experiences and meaningful learning environments.

"The school's pedagogy is aimed at whole-child development, helping children build their own learning by encouraging them to ask questions and guiding them to be curious and want to learn more," Stephens says.


ISSP seeks to develop both academic and extracurricular knowledge. Photo courtesy of ISSP

At ISSP, the IB PYP program consists of six transdisciplinary themes that are updated regularly to give students a real-life learning experience through real-world circumstances.

Furthermore, the school integrates 10 IB Student Profile attributes into each unit to support students learning and character development with an overall focus on fostering International Mindedness which is considered by many to be vital in preparing young children for the future.

The International Baccalaureate is a world-renowned academic curriculum founded in Switzerland in 1968. It has been adopted by 5,175 institutions in 157 countries.

There are four academic levels in the program: Primary Years Program (PYP), Middle Years Program (MYP), Diploma Program (DP), and Career-related Program (CP).

The International Baccalaureate of Primary Years Program (PYP) curriculum in particular is designed for primary school children aged 3 to 12.

International School Saigon Pearl (ISSP) is a world-class, purpose-built international school for students aged 18 months to 11 years located in Binh Thanh, HCMC.

Currently, ISSP is fully accredited by both CIS and NEASC, two of the most prestigious international education accreditation organizations. For further information about ISSP, parents can contact ISSP here.

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